Way to make her parents proud! Malia Obama will be attending Harvard University in the fall of 2017, following in her parents’ footsteps, the White House confirmed in a statement on Sunday, May 1.
“The President and Mrs. Obama announced today that their daughter Malia will attend Harvard University in the fall of 2017 as a member of the Class of 2021,” the statement reads. “Malia will take a gap year before beginning school.”
Though it has not been announced what Malia, 17, plans to do during her gap year — travel, volunteer or otherwise — her decision to spend a year away from academia would ensure that she starts college after her father has left office.
“When you’re a presidential has-been, the rest of your life you’re famous, you’re a target, you’re in a security bubble, but it’s not the same,” Gil Troy, a presidential historian, told The New York Times. “The kids can get to at least some level of irrelevance that they absolutely cannot get when they’re still in the White House.”
Malia was spotted touring various campuses this past year, but speculation that she had decided upon Harvard grew after the teen was photographed wearing a Harvard Class of 2020 shirt during her high school’s college signing day.
Last fall, the president’s daughter was called out for reportedly playing beer pong and taking shots at a party at Brown University, though the school later issued an apology on behalf of several overexcited students.
“The college application and selection process is stressful for most students who go through it, but one can only imagine how much the stress multiplies when the whole nation is watching,” The Brown Daily Herald wrote in an editorial in October, addressing several photos and videos that were taken of Malia without her knowledge and then posted to social media.
"The motivation to take these pictures was obvious: being at a party with the president’s daughter was an exciting, unexpected moment that many of us wanted to share with our friends,” the apology continued. “We often do not think about our tweets and Snapchats reaching anyone besides our friends and followers, and certainly not news outlets … Many Brown students were surprised and embarrassed to see themselves cited in the articles, as other Brown students posted them on Facebook with disappointed captions that criticized their peers for not simply leaving the 17-year-old alone on her college visit."